Campaigners to save Purley Pool are seeking your help urgently to help influence the consultation process Croydon Council is undertaking for its masterplans for the borough.
Purley Pool has been given a four-year stay of demolition by Croydon Council leader Mike Fisher – not least because the property developers that originally eyed the site close to Purley Station have gone lukewarm on the deal following the global economic downturn.
But it seems certain that once new leisure centres are opened in Waddon and Coulsdon, the facilities at Purley will be closed by Croydon Council on the grounds that it cannot afford the maintenance and running costs of three such centres.
In an email sent to supporters last night, Ken Whittick, from the Save Purley Pool Campaign, said, “We feel the future of a pool in Purley is a top priority for the people of Purley, Coulsdon, Kenley, Sanderstead, Selsdon and South Croydon.
“The Council is preparing a Core Strategy Document that will shape the future of Croydon and Purley. Within this document there is a section that deals with Leisure and Sports facilities.
“The Council wants to know what you want in the future so that this can be written into the strategy for Purley. They take notice of the number of people who let them know details of what they want. This can either be by letter or email. You can include other requirements, such as a car park or anything else that you want protected.
“Please send an email to email@example.com (Subject: Core Strategy) telling him that you consider a swimming pool essential for the people of the area for healthy activity.
“You can tell him that Purley is the hub of the South of the borough, having good transport links serving the above wards. The pool serves 250,000 customers a year, and our young people make good use of the pool.
“The local Councillors all support a pool in Purley and all the political parties supported the need for a pool in the future of Purley. A pool is supported by the doctors in our area and is well used by local schools and by the disabled. Eleven local schools use the pool.
“The number of emails the Council receives will decide whether a pool in Purley is included in the final document which will eventually be used by the planning inspectors at Croydon and by the Secretary of State in any appeal against a planning decision.
“You can make you views known and they can be as simple or comprehensive as you like. Please support a pool for the future. Please get a letter or email off to David Carlisle as soon as possible as the deadline is very short.”
Carlisle works in Croydon’s wonderfully titled “Spatial Planning Department”. What other form of planning that does not involve “space” is there?
Their recently established WordPress blog site has but a single page of information which says that copies of the plans are available in council libraries as well as online here and (more usefully) here.
The final consultation session is at Selsdon Hall, Addington Road, this Saturday, October 2 (10am – 3.30pm), for local residents to view the plans and have their say.
There is a further drop-in session planned for October 9 (1pm-4pm) at the United Reformed Church Hall, 906 Brighton Road , Purley.
And there are Masterplan sessions on October 8 (10am – 5pm) at St Michael and All Angels Church, Poplar Walk (West Croydon) and October 16 (10am – 3.30pm) at the Fairfield Room, Fairfield Halls (East Croydon).
Spatial planner Carlisle has promised that “All the representations we receive will be analysed alongside the evidence and a sustainability appraisal to formulate the draft Core Strategy put out for consultation in early 2011.
“A consultation report will be published at the same time to show how we consulted with people, who we consulted, what people said, the main issues raised and how the Council has responded to the main issues.”
Now that might be interpreted as saying, “The consultation report will detail how the Council fulfilled its requirement to consult the public, and then went ahead and did what we wanted to do in the first place”.
Put it to the test and contact Carlisle as Ken Whittick suggests at firstname.lastname@example.org